Jens P. Kleinau

Jens P. Kleinau (nom de plume “Johann Paulus Kal”) is the instructor for single handed weapons at Zornhau and Fechtfabrik Germany.

His main studies since 1973 had been Fencing and Shotokan Karate, and today are Tai Chi, Wing Chun and of cause Historical Martial Arts.

He has been a member of Zornhau since 2005, and in 2009 he joined a second HEMA club named Stahl auf Stahl, Frankfurt, Germany. In 2013 he founded the New Marxbrüder association in Frankfurt. Since 2015 he is teaching as well at the Fechtfabrik in Frankfurt.

Jens P. researches, transcribes, translates, and interprets the medieval and renaissance fighting manuals and publishes at his well-known blog As a part of the Zornhau team he measures and handles original weapons and shields and publishes the data at the club’s website.

To broaden his horizon and assure the quality of his own work, he is in constant exchange with other experts (mostly using his three letter acronym “jpk” or a nome de plume matching this acronym like “Johann Paulus Kal” at Facebook).

Lately he was awarded as Best Instructor by the HEMA Scholar Award 2017.


Albrecht Dürer: Messer & Dagger

Before there was Dagger and Rapier there was the knife and the dagger. The dagger being the courtly small-sword (Degen) and the knife being the tool of peasants and craftsmen. The dagger was known for vicious thrusts and the knife with the long blade for brutal cuts.

It seems natural to combine the weapons as we think today, that fighters could not have enough weapon power in hands. But in fact the two weapons at used as weapon combination is rarely found before the 16th century. If the development of weapons changed the social structure or vice versa is to be discussed by far wiser men than me. But as a researcher on fightbooks I can tell that the 16th century authors had a serious problem to solve: They needed to provide working solutions to hold on to the fighting tradition of the ancients but at the same time sell the new product.

If one person could find a solution it was the genius Albrecht Dürer. The artist and successful businessman had bridged centuries in his art and sold books earning a fortune. He solved the puzzle by combining dagger and the long knife (Langes Messer). And the way he did it was brilliant. But he was not the only one as we will see.

This workshop will tell how to bridge from old medieval fighting to Rapier and Dagger by the way of Renaissance fencing masters.